4 key lessons for businesses in 2022
2021 really kept businesses on their toes. But if trying times are good for anything, it’s that they force us to refine what’s really important: the strategies that actually help us to succeed as a community. All the experience we’ve collected this year is just too valuable to leave in 2021, so we squeezed everything we’ve learnt while working with top brands into these five essential business lessons to take forward into 2022.
1.) Tell your sustainability story
We all know that the key to securing brand growth, year on year, is data-led creative content that reaches consumers where and when they want it. Nothing’s changing there. But what do consumers want to see in 2022?
Surprise! It’s sustainability. According to research, one in three consumers claim to have stopped purchasing specific brands and products in 2021 because they had sustainability-related concerns about them. And just like the digital revolution, this trend is rising faster than we might realize.
In 2022, your modern content marketing strategy still has to be relentlessly consumer-first, but it also has to be planet-first. Wherever your brand is on this journey, this is the year we all have to start telling sustainability stories and inspiring our consumers and sectors to do better. Your relevance and the future of the planet depend on it.
2).Align marketing and e-commerce to optimize and grow D2C sales
The rising consumer demand for online purchasing has been a big deal for digital development over the pandemic. Some global fast moving consumer goods brands have responded by experimenting with direct-to-consumer (D2C) sales, launching their own e-commerce offerings and channels. And they’re definitely onto something.
Owning e-commerce can give brands that extra level of control over their customer journeys, but only if those channels are directly aligned with marketing insights and data-led consumer journey mapping.
In the year ahead, this D2C movement will only mature if developed on a cross-functional level. That means marketing and digital teams need to align around customer personas and insights in order to reach the right audiences at the right time.
3.) Adopt an agile, fast and experiment-led approach to beat your competitors
The ability to move quickly and adapt to complex digital and consumer climates is no longer just a competitive advantage for modern businesses. When uncertain times are testing us, we need to be constantly testing our strategies and processes against them.
Experimentation doesn’t have to mean big, innovative leaps that shake the status-quo in risky and expensive ways every time. This new year, let’s all start seeing innovation as just the pursuit of fast and frequent marginal gains.
With the right processes, systems and permissions so experiment embedded into your marketing strategy and overall company mindset, success can be rapid measured, and scaled with no need for big budgets or vast amounts of time. In 2022, failures are the new gains.
4.) Nurture the right skills to improve performance in the face of change
Innovation isn’t the only process that needs a mindset makeover this new year. We also need to redefine how we value and measure growth.
Real, sustained business growth comes from nurturing lasting in-house capabilities that build the most creative, robust, and resilient marketing teams. The investment of time and budget into training and development should be an integral part of this year’s marketing strategy. Because strategy with a long-term focus on people, purpose and processes enables teams to achieve consistent learnings and wins.